Wednesday, June 25, 2008

REVIEW: When Bad Things Happen to Good Knitters

When Bad Things Happen to Good Knitters
An Emergency Survival Guide
by Marion Edmonds & Ahza Moore

Paperback: 144 pages
Publisher: The Taunton Press (Feb. 6, 2007)


The title and cover illustrations of this knitter's survival guide certainly lead to a quick chuckle and peaked my interest... but is this just yet another so-called "must have book for all knitters" or is this one really a good investment?

I turned the first few pages and read "Work is over. The dog is walked. The dishes are done. Finally, it's your knitting time." I'm liking this book already!

If you've bought other survival guides, you'll know what comes next... the sections on putting together a knitter's tool kit, the speech about always swatching (the authors are described as "knitting nanas or knitting fairy godmothers"... my Nana never lectured me on swatching!), talk of gauge, yarn labels, choosing the right needles and casting on. This is all pretty standard to survival guides of our times, but these ladies throw in some fun, useful tips (purling in to your swatch to indicate needle size; saving swatches to create a memory filled lap blanket; the answer to that age old question of why gauge measurements are given over 4 inches...) and cute humor.

The Secret Language of Knitting Patterns section is informative and inclusive. The list of standard abbreviations is longer than most I've seen. The "who says it's general knitting knowledge" is well said - you all know what happens when we assume in life... and I'm sure I'm not the only one who's learned the hard way what happens when you assume in knitting!

The book goes on with more whit and humor than I can shake a size 7 bamboo straight at. The tips and short stories highlighted in green blocks throughout will keep you in stitches ... or help to keep your stitches safely on the needles! I got a good chuckle from reading the tidbit on page 72 about the child (from the authors' after-school knitting program for ages 5 - 11) who was so pleased to show off the lovely scarf she started at home. The only problem? The kids were not allowed to take the knitting needles home... so this future Zimmerman fashioned her own from ball point pens! This leads us to a handy "emergency tool substitution" chart. First thing on it? This Book... there is no substitute. However, you can, of course, substitute the cork from last night's bottle of wine for point protectors. Drink up ladies... you have a lot of needle points that need protecting!

The book ends with a wonderful section on finishing... complete with perfect illustrations (the illustrations all throughout the book are clear and helpful).

My final verdict? Yes, this is one to add to your knitting bag. Bonus... its small in size, but not too small that we need coke bottle glasses to read it, and its small in price!

About the Authors: Between them, Marion Edmonds and Ahza Moore have 119 years of knitting experience. As partners in KnittingTogetherNYC, they have made knitting their livelihood, giving private knitting lessons and teaching at SoHo's Purl yarn store. They contributed patterns to Last-Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson and develop patterns for magazines. This is their first book.

The winner of the Get Your Crochet On! Fly Tops & Funky Flavas book from my last review was drawn this morning via random number generator...

Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers: 7
Timestamp: 2008-06-25 13:56:53 UTC

Congratulations to #7... Joanne! Your book will be arriving very shortly.

I have just received a wonderful shipment from Namaste of items to review. I will begin my review/testing this week (i.e. using the bags in real life), so look for the official review in another week or two. In the meantime, I can say that the new Peacock blue color is beautious!!!!!!! I heart it. I also heart this company... a family owned business where bringing your dog to work is the norm and their products are made from animal-friendly faux leather!


SissySees said...

Sounds good. All of it - book, Namaste, can't wait...

Dianne said...

Sounds like a good book. I've never heard of Namaste, but with a philosophy like that I like them already, and whatever they're selling, I'm buying!!!

Thanks for the tips on boy dogs... After always having girls, it's kind of like Cooper is an alien creature. :)

Kathy R said...

You get to review are so lucky! My mom bought me their Cali Clutch, in olive, a beautiful color too.

gypsyknits said...

Thank you for the review. I need to purchase a new knitter a birthday gift and this sounds perfect.

Congrats to the winner of the contest book!

Anonymous said...

I am loving the book reviews! Keep them coming.

Please. :D

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